Birding for one day – and it was great! (August 17, 2012).

18 - 08 - 2012

August 17th (2012) we did a one-day birding trip to Rio Blanco & El Recinto del Pensamiento with Jean Rosenberg and daughter Nathalie from Massachusetts. The day began with a sighting of Rusty-faced Parrots feeding on mistletoes in Rio Blanco, a good breakfast and a short walk to the first of three Antpitta feeding stations. Here, we enjoyed the Brown-banded (endemic), Chestnut-naped & Chestnut-crowned Antpittas.  In the second feeding station the Bicolored Antpitta (near-endemic) showed briefly but was well seen. And in the third station we had a close encounter with the Slate-crowned Antpitta, feeding on earthworms just 5 feet away from us!

A pleasurable hike through the forest yielded long views of a family of four Long-tailed Antbirds, feeding along bamboo thickets with the tiny Rufous-crowned Tody-Tyrant. Some of the birds that showed up really well: Andean Guan, Beryl-spangled Tanager, Black-capped and Superciliaried Hemispingus, Blue-and-black Tanager, Pearled Treerunner, Golden-fronted Whitestart (near-endemic), Crimson-mantled Woodpecker, Cinnamon Flycatcher, Mountain Elaenia, Masked Trogon, Green-and-black Fruiteater and Azara’s Spinetail. Before leaving Rio Blanco we had great views of the Golden-plumed Parakeet (a group of 30 flying over, plus 5 birds perched in front of the lodge baranda) and the White-capped Tanager (a group of 5, perched).

Late afternoon we visited the hummingbird feeders at El Recinto del Pensamiento. Hummingbirds seen here plus those seen in Rio Blanco made a total of 16 species for the day!  The species seen were: Tourmaline Sunangel, Buff-tailed Coronet, Long-tailed Sylph, Tyrian Metaltail, Speckled Hummingbird, Collared Inca, Fawn-breasted Brilliant, White-bellied Woodstar, Green-fronted Lancebill, Bronzy Inca, Wedge-billed Hummingbird, Sword-billed Hummingbird, Andean Emerald, Green Violetear, Sparkling Violetear and Rufous-tailed Hummingbird . Before the day ended, we had a close encounter with the Sickle-winged Guan, Golden-crowned Flycatcher and Pale-edged Flycatcher.